The Heuristics of Ancient Principles on Civilized Order
"One generation passes, another stays behind — such has it been since the men of ancient times." (the Tomb of King Intef, 17th Dynasty)1
I - Introduction
A verdant band slithering through the desert; a solitary life-force surrounded by an otherwise inhospitable environment. The ancient cities that emerged from the Nile lay like pearls threaded through it, never straying from the riverbank -- the agricultural sustenance they depended upon was itself reliant on seasonal shifts in water quality and quantity. Jealous eyes always sought for a way to possess the infrastructure and resources these Egyptian cities produced. This vulnerability required a stable society that could organize and defend its perpetuation.
For a sense of order to emerge, from which civilization could be perpetuated, specific delineations on developing collective existence (who does what and why) and making predictive calculations (when do things need to happen and how) were needed. For the ancient Egyptians, these were concisely informed by theories on how a perceived 'spiritual source' interfaced with and moved the apparent manifestation of reality through the context of lived experience in the habitat of the Nile. The awareness of nuance necessary to perceive these facets was only available to a miniscule population of highly-intelligent and motivated people, who would become religious priests. They established the underlying ontology of the collective consciousness and its social hierarchy through a mythologized identity. Without this continuity of metaphysical relation to one another -- through some authoritative set of 'approved' activity / knowledge and purpose stemming from a shared mythological origin2 -- the cities along the Nile would lose their coalescence and any collective which did have a cohesive sense of itself would swoop in.
Everyone needed the priests, then, regardless of sentiment. Those who cannot understand the true nuance of a situation will require direction toward an optimal outcome by those who can. Likewise, the population also needed information filtered so there can be a social focus -- not 'lying', not a moral thing, but to establish an anchor so the collective was not unmoored. Reality is too complex for most people to want to try to comprehend -- they need (and often want) someone to filter reality into explanations that they can use in their daily lives. The average human mind yearns to exist within limits, the exceptional seeks to surpass them, but anyone who feels they exist in a limitless cosmos would shrink from it and create imagined limitations. In very simple terms: religious practices enables individuals strapped for leisurely contemplation or intellectual capacity to arrive at complex ideas with minimal effort, while helping the collective by consistently reinforcing cohesion. In no way is this a derisive statement, but meant to exemplify how and why religion is so vital to maintaining social life in that it concisely informs cosmology, morality, and identity in group relations / functions.
Rising from Egyptian religion, the political and economic affairs that rulers concerned themselves with helped maintain this precarious civilization by enforcing an established order, conserving the social hierarchy that the priests justified. The line between failure and success depended upon skilled and obedient functionaries at every level, even if through slavery, torture, and immoderately dogmatic rulings. Therefore, those families of conquerors turned divine emissaries at the top of the hierarchy, advised by the religious intelligentsia, were preoccupied not with justice, not with equality or 'fairness', not with the support of the common laborer, but with far more practical concerns about long-term survival.
How will the succession of power play-out after the ruler's death? How can the many local powers and single central power be balanced? Can measures be taken to ensure the victories of one generation do not become the decadent lethargies of their descendants? To the rulers of the ancient world, especially to Egyptians so especially reliant on the Nile, the answers to these questions were not based in any ideologically rigid system. It is true that civilization fundamentally relies on a religious tradition and a set social hierarchy, but these emerged as adaptations to their environment -- they were not necessarily impressed onto the rulers to believe. Much like parents issuing directives to their children, the parents themselves must have the flexibility of different principles to not only authoritatively issue those directives but also to behave contrary if they deem survival depends on it. For the ancients, survival for all social classes depended on authoritatively applied general principles rather than the dispensation, promotion, or securement of universalized beliefs and ethics. Indeed, the only universality we find in all history is in the need for securing order.
Much like how the violence of predators keeping the populations of prey at an environmentally stable level prevents the entire biome from imploding in overpopulation, so too must there be similarly 'natural' and innate proclivities that the artificial environment of civilization demands and incentivizes, as an organic extension of human nature. This is not to say the same brutality of the wild is necessary for civilization to be perpetuated, but that there are historically empirical principles used to address concerns regarding threats to order -- alignment to them will always be magnetized or gravitated toward regardless of understanding as such. If there are principles that are necessary to maintain civilization as much as there are conditions which must be met before its emergence, then they are of paramount importance to understand because it would imply that lessons learned from historical studies would apply to any time, even our contemporary one. It would therefore also imply that situations which we are encountering presently are not wholly modern or unresolvable. Nowhere is this clearer than during the Middle Kingdom and the Second Intermediate Period, when Egypt encountered the Hyksos.
II - Prologue
In the southern part of Egypt, off the western bank of the Nile, there is a wide, gullied ravine named Shatt er-Rigal. Though afflicting heat and erosion have contoured the rusty-tan rock lining the walls of the ravine, there remains a section of human-carved etchings that have survived for eons. Beside informal, ancient graffiti and prehistoric pictographs of giraffes lies the engraved image of Nebhepetre Mentuhotep II, a pharaoh proclaimed as the "Horus Uniter of the Two Lands". He is depicted in full regalia, exhibiting many bizarre and formidable Bronze Age trappings: a war-mace in his right hand, a staff in his left, and the pschent two-parted crown, symbolizing his dominion as both "King of Upper and Lower Egypt" -- over both the northern and southern Nile. Behind him stands his diminutive mother, Iah, and before him his dead father -- both also parents of Neferu II, who would become queen to Mentuhotep, her brother.3 Now, after shadows have stretched across the stele engraving for four thousand years, any onlooker feels little more than that universal awe at ancient things. For the contemporaries of Mentuhotep II, however, for those that endured the end of the First Intermediate Period, these personages and symbols were a reminder of events in their personal lives and of struggles extending back generations before.
The First Intermediate Period (a wholly modern term) began c. 2180 BC, when the Old Kingdom withered. There was not a single, cataclysmic event that ushered in a change as we might expect. Instead, it was the culmination of repeated failures in dynastic succession coupled with the centralized power's inability to handle large-scale drought and famine, which led to the development of de facto city-states.4 Unable to glean any benefits from fealty, these cities formalized their own preexisting aristocracies into rulers who oversaw their municipal territory completely on their own terms5. Due to the widespread famines of the early First Intermediate Period, there was a need for control over the Nile and land for producing food. This led to competition or agreements between cities into provincial nomes, typically organized by one dominant city. A century of this evolving arrangement produced two main powers: the northern, Tenth Dynasty, whose capital was Herakleopolis Magna (the name given by Romans when they discovered the ruins); and the Eleventh Dynasty's southern powers centered in Thebes.
Very insignificant evidence remains of what customs or people ruled the Tenth Dynasty, but what knowledge remains of the Eleventh expands beyond formal inscriptions and titles into a familial narrative. It began with a nameless "door keeper", (perhaps a palace guard or city sentry) who managed to attain influence and helped confederate the area surrounding Thebes. His son, Intef II continued consolidation and more cohesively organized the region. His son, Intef III expanded his grandfather's vision in increasing logistical ferocity to begin opposing the northern powers. Inheriting this potent southern kingdom was the "door keeper's" great-grandson: Mentuhotep II. The desperation over famines and the upheaval in competing regional powers had escalated into a binary struggle for domination over all Egypt.
Into this situation, the Asiatics6 arrived. Coming from Canaan and the lower-Levant, across the Sinai Peninsula, groups of these people would raid the northeastern 'border' of the Tenth Dynasty, even causing havoc inside the Delta region. One document, called The Instruction for Merikarê, likely written contemporaneously to these raids near the end of the First Intermediate Period, touches upon the universal Egyptian sentiment for these people:
"And this you can say of the barbarians: the accursed Asiatic, life is dreadful where he lives—
Lacking water, unfriendly due to the many trees, the paths difficult because of the mountains!
He will not stay in one place
He has been fighting since the time of Horus: he cannot conquer, nor can he be conquered!
Nor will he indicate the day of battle, like a thief who skirts the fringes of the camp."7
Another document named the Admonitions of Ipuwer, written well after but about this period personified the Asiatics as a chaotic foil opposed to 'virtuous order', and warned rulers about the cost of an unguarded border.8 This instability along land trade routes leading outside Egypt, along with mounting dynastic and bureaucratic issues, formed an ideal opportunity for Thebes to strike.
The future of Egyptian Civilization was decided in combat so archaic and abstruse that chariots and composite bows were still centuries away. Though the details are uncertain, Mentuhotep II likely campaigned up the Nile, establishing supply chains and crushing resistance before assaulting Heracleopolis Magna directly. Victory was decisive for the Eleventh Dynasty, and the conquered Tenth suffered both physical and symbolically spiritual defeat with executions performed, monuments destroyed, and religious icons consolidated. Mentuhotep II declared himself sovereign over all the Nile and remerged the white hedjet of the northwith the red deshret of the south into the pschent crown, as Menes, the first pharaoh had done. The Middle Kingdom of Egyptian history was inaugurated. The Shatt er-Rigal stele was carved with celebration. The world turned with a new generation dawning c. 2025 BC, a thousand years after the First Dynasty.
III - Usurpation and Succession
To prevent another fracturing of Egypt and for order to be reestablished, the regional system of the nomes that had emerged in the First Intermediate Period had to be suppressed. By imposing a central authority of fealty and taxation that superseded and inhibited their learned sovereignty, (a process that was never-ending but always advancing) Egypt could once again have a monolithically imposed identity and destiny. Many of the nomarchs were just as wealthy and powerful as Mentuhotep himself, and many of them surely therefore saw him as one who had overstepped his territorial bounds. The pharaoh always had to be aware that, at any point, a group of dissatisfied subordinates could align against them and, through the arbitration of violence, strip them of power.
This anxiety over potential usurpation is something very alien to most modern people, as we have grown accustomed to a 'peaceful transfer of power' through 'agreed-upon political procedure'. It is true that the procedure itself holds no inherent authority in determining 'succession', but more so it prompts a regular, very wastefully tedious process via a 'mock civil-war' where votes are cast to determine which faction could potentially allocate the most violence. This fundamentally undermines the order necessary to civilized processes by dividing society against itself and denying any overarching, common identity to contextualize relationships. Contrast this to the rule of Mentuhotep II: worshiped as a living god during his lifetime as the religious focal point who emanated a spiritual grammar for collective identity to coagulate and communicate through. Though subordinate, local rulers might oppose obligations put upon them, and though they might even act against the pharaoh, this was ultimately a dispute among the social elite over who would occupy that focal point, not a denial that one existed whatsoever -- in fact, it reinforced the authority of that sovereign role.
But regardless of rivalry to their living power, the pharaoh would eventually die which forced them to account for who would rule after. Though Mentuhotep II seamlessly passed the mantle to his son, the line of rulers that the progenitor Theban "door keeper" had produced would be broken after the reign of Mentuhotep II's grandson: Mentuhotep IV. These issues in succession are often best understood by the circumstances surrounding and the nature of the following ruler. It is unknown whether Mentuhotep IV had a child or some other designated successor. What is known is that his tjati, Amenhemat, would become the next pharaoh and begin his own 12th Dynasty.
A recurring situation in pre-modern history involves the relationship between a ruler and their vizier, their lieutenant and second-in-command (tjati in Egyptian). Due to the necessity of rulers relying on advisors, viziers, and regional compliance, opportunities can emerge for figures to assert their will above that of the pharaoh. If the 'true' ruler does not make their authority known to all beneath them and instead only issue decrees through others, then those intermediary figures essentially become de facto rulers who can easily usurp power, even indirectly. A vizier, for example, could assign harems or other luxuries to the 'true' ruler so they are occupied while important decisions are left open to be made by others.9 This incentivizes pharaohs to select loyal, adept viziers, which strengthens their ability to secure order. But there are no guarantees in any system.
Amenhemat's 12th Dynasty would rule a united Egypt for a century, spanning eight rulers from the same extended family. Amenemhat I came to power c. 1990 BC with the specter of regional autonomy and rebellion persisting throughout his otherwise orderly reign. The Instructions of Amenemhat, commissioned by his son and successor, Senusret I, and written in the voice of his deceased father, includes a passage that recounts the prosperity and security10 under the pharaoh:
"One did not hunger during my years, did not thirst; they sat content with all my deeds, remembering me fondly; and I set each thing firmly in its place.
I bated lions, captured crocodiles; I conquered Nubians and brought back Medjai, [Nubian nomads] and I made Asiatics crawl like dogs."11
Other passages recount advice from Amenemhat I, telling his son to avoid becoming too close with anyone and to be distrustful of servants and vassals.12 The text describes how, unexpectedly, and while Senusret I was away on campaign in Libya, a conspiracy against Amenemhat I approached his bed in the night and assassinated him.13 In a poignant line, this juxtaposition of historical scenes stemming eulogistically from the son, but spoken by the vanquished father to him showcases the tragic nature of the conspiracy: "[. . .] the attack happened when I was without you [. . .] Before I had sat with you, to make your position"14 The son, considering his fathers last thoughts, asks himself: 'where were you when I needed you?'
Another interesting work, The Tale of Sinuhe, was also written shortly after the thirty year reign of Amenemhat I. The narrative opens with an official named Sinuhe on campaign with Senusret I in Libya. When they receive word that Amenemhat I has been assassinated, Senusret I stops everything and rushes back to Egypt to control the situation while Sinuhe, motivated by fear of the tumultuous situation, flees to Retjenu (an Egyptian term for Canaan and the lower-Levant). Though he lives successfully with the Asiatics, he longs to return to his homeland. Then, as a prodigal son in his old age, he is invited to live in Egypt again by Senusret I.
After consolidating his dynasty by defeating the conspiratorial uprising that assassinated his father, Senusret I would leave the throne to his son, Amenemhat II. This ruler continued stabilizing the volatile situation in Egypt by establishing co-regency with his son, Senusret II to ensure the transition from one ruler to another was less fluid, as it had been with their predecessor. It is historically ironic that the grandson of a (likely) usurper would take measures to ensure a successful succession. Though Senusret II would not continue this practice, he still took keen interest in movements toward long-term stability, especially in his work exploiting the Faiyum Region around Lake Quarun (the ancient name of the lake was Moeris). This kidney-shaped area is a natural oasis that sits west of the Nile, approximately 70-75 miles south of Cairo, and fills during seasonal floods -- a feature that had potential to store excess water for dry seasons, but one which had never been given serious attention under prior pharaohs. The time-horizon of possibilities was widening in the stability their family ensured.
IV - The Two-Sided Sword of Stability
During this same time, first-hand experience of Asiatics would begin to be more common for those living in Lower Egypt. In the 12th Dynasty, raids against Palestinian tribes, though a common historical practices, was atypical compared to the amount of trade passing between Egypt and the Levant, specifically Canaan and the port of Byblos.15 Ultimately any overland trade from the rest of the ancient world had to pass through Canaan, leading many Asiatics and their wares to the eastern part of the Nile Delta. There was now a growing need for some hub in the area to absorb this influx of trade so it could be better controlled.
The settlement of Avaris, though underdeveloped, was ideally located on the eastern-most branch of the Nile for both land-trade across the Sinai and sea-trade from the Mediterranean. Resources would begin pumping into the settlement, allowing it to fully utilize its advantageous position and accommodate the commerce entering it -- all eventually in a feedback loop that attracted enterprising Egyptians and Asiatics alike. Whether the Asiatic immigrants were primarily refugees or entrepreneurs is unknown, though it is likely there was representation from both populations. For those preexisting Asiatic servants in the homes of prominent individuals, it could be that (if their master trusted them) they would invite relatives to work with.16 Most Palestinians, however, would not have had this opportunity and would likely not have even spoken Egyptian. This would lead to the need for bilingual supervisors, probably typically drawn from those who had connections with Egyptians or who had been working in Egypt for decades and understood the operations. Regardless, an entire parallel hierarchy of Asiatics steadily trickled in over the years.
Some began contemplating where this would inevitably lead. The Prophecies of Neferti, written during this period, is mostly concerned about the potential to regress into another Intermediate Period through political turmoil, but also foretells:
"A strange bird shall be engendered in the marshes of the Northland:
He has built a nest beside the citizens so that our people bear him of necessity."17
If internal social cohesion was deemed paramount, then what about these immigrants who did not even speak the same language, who were rapidly growing in number, and who the Egyptians in the Nile Delta, were steadily relying on to do the 'hard work'? Throughout history, successful states often willingly abdicate their connection to the fundamental labor prefacing their success so that they can live more comfortably. Yet by doing so, they open themselves up to groups less culturally predisposed to their method of rule, undermining their own strength and the civilization that elevated them.
Historians tend to blame famines, invasions, and other overt phenomena for the decline of dynasties and the civilizations around them; and no doubt these are important indicators for how situations shift and whether people can adapt. Yet just as often, they fail to qualitatively gauge the stagnating effect of 'stable' periods upon political elites who grow too accustomed to the security of their power. Quite simply: entropy catches up with the system and those who otherwise have inert material advantages cannot adapt to the return of instability due to their incentive to defend a status quo which empowers the formation of more ambitious enemies.
It was around 1850 BC that 'multi-racial bureaucrats' began to be noticeable in the Nile Delta. The predominantly male children of Egyptian fathers and Asiatic mothers would have emerged first in outpost towns, where being bilingual and biracial would be useful. More often than not, a local governmental role was filled from father to son unless the father managed to upset the crown one way or another. Through this lineage, the half-Egyptian, half-Asiatic boys of officials could come to oversee certain aspects of local business. Especially in Avaris this phenomenon allowed for the accumulation of relatively insignificant local influence, but as that influence consolidated it could be exchanged for real political and economic power.
More trade caravans and diplomatic envoys continued to cross the Sinai peninsula from Canaan, adorned in brightly-colored clothes and bearing foreign goods, both luxury and common. A stele commemorating the tribute from one of these envoys gives us the earliest mention of the term 'Hyksos'. The Greek designation Ὑκσώς (Hykussos) directly derives from the Egyptian ḥḳ3w-ḫ3swt (hik-swa his-wot), meaning 'rulers of foreign lands'. It is only ever used in two contexts throughout Egyptian history: one is for Asiatic chieftains, and the other is for the future 15th Dynasty.
V - Instability and Conquest
The 12th Dynasty had reached its zenith. Senusret II's great-nephew had built a Great Canal at Lake Moeris, allowing the region to thrive. The prosperity of the region prompted the designation of 'capitol city' to move to Itjawy near the lake. The nomarchs had been thoroughly brought to task. Nubia paid Egypt tribute in their subjugation. But in the course of two pharaohs -- Amenhemat IV and Sobekneferu (one of the first confirmed sole female rulers in all history) -- all this would change. Sobekneferu would leave no successors at her death c. 1800 BC, ending the 12th Dynasty. This was not as dramatic as we might anticipate because a 13th Dynasty emerged almost simultaneously through some vague familial relation of Amenemhat IV or Sobekneferu. It was a broken but still connected chain of rulers -- a seemingly mild stumble in tempo. The new dynasty overall experienced a time of uncertainty, attested to in the fact that the average reign for each ruler was only three years.18
Within the decade of the 13th Dynasty's emergence, the situation would open up, and from its maw would emerge a rival 14th Dynasty and the beginning of a Second Intermediate Period. The Asiatic-dominated eastern Nile Delta broke away from the rest of Egypt. To the 13th Dynasty, which still had firm control from Bubastis to Elephantine, (modern day: Tell-Basta to Aswan) this emergent, rival jurisdiction was at best a 'soft coregency' of Egypt.19 At worst, it was annexation. Though the 14th Dynasty perceived the latter interpretation more favorably, they were still heavily reliant on avoiding bad diplomacy with the 13th so they could move trade to the rest of Egypt and further south, to Nubia. But if that was the case, then the 13th Dynasty was more reliant on the only overland trade route off the continent. The very conditions that had made Avaris a nucleus of trade has positioned it to strangle the rest of Egypt and assume the role as the 14th Dynasty's capital city.
The great-great-great-grandchildren of Avaris' original immigrants were now kings, though they acknowledged they were Asiatics, not pharaohs, in their refusal to 'Egyptianize' their names or titles, still very aware of how their ancestors set the stage for their usurpation.20 One-hundred and fifty years prior, the settlement and expansion of Avaris followed a gradual evolution from an initial state of Egyptian farmers and laborers to an Egyptian palace with minor Middle Bronze Age, 'Proto-Hyksos' influences. These influences steadily developed further into a more diversified, affluent city, and ultimately the Egyptian influences became more minor.21 The tiny laborer rooms were replaced by spacious family homes.22 Now it was a massive Hyksos metropolis, which was the center of Asiatic potentiality in Egypt and would be the 14th and 15th Dynasty's capital city.23
The history of trade relations, shared linguistic and cultural characteristics and ethnicity allowed diplomacy with the Levant to come naturally for the 14th Dynasty, but they appeared adept and energetic with many foreign powers. Avaris' inherently economic character lended itself well to tactful agreements, and the skills the Asiatic immigrants had learned from the Egyptians were now being used to politically surround them. Minoans painted frescoes in their halls.24 Evidence exists that, through intermediaries, they traded goods as far west as Spain.25 And relations with Nubia to the south of Egypt were strong.
One 14th Dynasty ruler, King Seshi, appears to have had a particularly long and prosperous reign with his queen, Tati. Seshi's origin to the throne is unknown, but we do know he had two sons: the eldest, Ipqu (a Semitic name), would die before he could ascend to power, leaving the younger brother, Nehsy, to assume command as his father waned in years. Of particular interest is that King Nehsy's mother, Tati, was a Nubian princess. So we have an inter-racial marriage of 14th Dynasty Semetic royalty to African Kushite nobility.26 The ever-worsening situation in the 13th Dynasty and the constricting pincer of the Delta and Nubia, helped acclimate the initiative into the 14th Dynasty's hands.
It is around this juncture when historians separate the 14th Dynasty from the 15th. And though there was little difference in those who held authority, the objectives and mindset of the rulers had shifted. Three 15th Dynasty rulers -- Šamuqēnu, 'Aper-'Anati, and Sakir-Har -- came and went before Sewoserenre Khayan took the mantle of power.27His name translates to: 'Khayan, the one that Re made strong'. Interestingly, through the strength of an Egyptian god, he would eventually seize the title of 'pharaoh' and relinquish his association with a foreign origin by discarding his 'Hyksos' moniker. It was Khayan who would attempt complete conquest of Egypt.
Human beings are pack-predators; we hunt in a group-strategy of cooperative efficiency. Whereas other predators use talons, claws, speed and camouflage to better catch prey, human beings have a hyper-adaptive intelligence to produce weapons.28 As an enhancement of our social prerogative, we also have linguistic communication: gestures, signs, commonly understood verbalizations. Therefore, to understand humanity, we cannot ignore that our mindset is one of a pack-predator's. Moreso, since all predator animals require a defined space to exist in, to own, and propagate their will throughout,29 and since there is only so much space in any given biome, competition between two different parties claiming the same things is inevitable. We call that competition: war.30 There is no higher competition for human beings -- war is the ultimate arbiter between collectives. Therefore, though there are material gains from territorial expansion and opportunities to advance in the hierarchy, warfare more importantly allows the collective to be totally engrossed and in-touch with the potentiality of humanity as a pack-predator. The more capable, cohesive and energetic the collective, the more it will want to assert its will upon others.
We must also regard ancient mores about warfare firstly as vastly different from those of our contemporary times. This is predominantly due to the fact that 'equality' among modern populations includes the stipulation that all people must equally be called during war. In ancient times, however, there was a special class of people for this purpose who constantly trained and exercised their skill. Furthermore, in ancient times, the interests of the ruling class did not need to be justified to the craftsmen or laborers in rational or even sentimental terms. Many times, the populace would only be generally aware of some war their rulers were waging, but not know (or possibly even care) about the specifics except in how it affected them directly, which was often very minutely. The army would leave and then return. If they were defeated, the people would labor for their conquerors. If the army returned victorious, there would be many foreign treasures and slaves paraded through the town. Much like the tribal setting from which civilization emerged, the celebration over victory could interrupt life for as long as the sentiment persisted. This was actually a way of maintaining order (even if it temporarily interrupted structured behavior) by spontaneously releasing tension while also actively reminding everyone of the potency of the rulers.
The 13th Dynasty quickly fell to Khayan's sword. In the power vacuum, two short-lived nomes established autonomy: the 'Abydos Dynasty' and the Theban 16th Dynasty. We know nothing of the obscure Abydos Dynasty or what happened during its approximately twenty-year run. It was crushed. With the Abydos territory absorbed, Khayan encroached on Thebes, rolling down the Nile: dreadful and grim, looting rapaciously in conquest. After a ten-year struggle, the 16th Dynasty eventually succumbed. After moving further south and absorbing territory down to the First Cataract of the Nile, Khayan brought all of Egypt under the dominion of Hyksos rule c. 1582 BC.31
VI - Cultural Divestment and Decadence
Shortly after his conquests, after bringing Egypt under their people's dominion, and after a fifty-five year reign, Khayan would die and the throne would pass to a man named Awoserre Apophis. It is disputed exactly how the throne came into Apophis' possession, since Khayan's son, Yanassi, was the designated heir.32 As we have seen, however, these issues with succession were not as seamless as we have come to expect. Regardless, Apophis was not the intended successor or from any royal family for that matter, which leads to suspicions of usurpation. This image of a foreigner squabbling over titles that do not belong to them and then imposing their will onto Egypt was the standard image of the Hyksos to the Egyptians, which Apophis epitomized.
Throughout the reign of the Hyksos, in both the 14th and 15th Dynasties, monuments from prior rulers were commonly defaced, destroyed, or relocated to Avaris. For conquerors to assert themselves over the people they subjected, this cultural divestment is common. By removing or defacing the physical objects that signify their collective identity, it erodes the supporting spiritual connections that the conquered people had. The Egyptian monuments (statues, busts, pillars, religious icons, etc) would be taken by force or perhaps even offered by local nomarchs as a sign of compliance to the Hyksos. Monuments have been discovered in the ruins of Avaris that date to prior dynasties.33 Some transported items were sent with emissaries and given to foreign rulers as diplomatic offerings.34 Apophis had his name inscribed on sphinxes from the 13th Dynasty as if to claim they were made for him.35 This phenomenon can be further understood as an extension of historical Asiatic behavior. In the city of Sidon, archeologists had long known about trade between Lebanon and Egypt but came across some peculiar crafts with strange hieroglyphs on them. These artifacts were mulled over, but the writing on them could not be deciphered. Finally, it was concluded that these hieroglyphs did not have any meaning -- they were unintelligibly scribbled images that only imitated hieroglyphs: ancient forgeries.36 Scarabs and jewelry had these designs put on them to increase their value as being 'from the Nile', surely with impromptu or scripted 'translations' by those trying to sell them. The peoples of the lower-Levant and Canaan could only ever imitate what it was to be Egyptian.
The religion around Avaris had evolved into its own 'imitating' entity over the years as well. Asiatic immigrants had brought their Canaanite beliefs and gods with them: El and Ashera, Ba'al, Dagon, and Mot. But to integrate, they had to amalgamate their foreign gods and traditions into a land that already had rites of its own. So they adapted the synchronistic relationship between Canaanite deities and Egyptian ones, particularly with regard to similarities between the Canaanite Ba'al and the Egyptian Set as spiritually synonymous forces.37 Set is the 'patron' god of the desert and foreigners. He is a storm god, like Ba'al. Set is the son of the Earth and Sky, and Ba'al descends from the sky to the Earth during the dry season -- they represent a liminal meeting of the two at the horizon. So the Hyksos were incentivized to revere Set, even naming him 'Lord of Avaris' in locations around the city and having rulers designate themselves 'beloved by / son of Set'.38 This zealous preoccupation with obscure cults, combined with the destruction or theft of historic artifacts, did nothing to endear Egyptians to their new overlords.
But in their moment of victory, instead of reordering society and establishing long-term stability, the Hyksos suckled on their spoils. Though their ancestors had ultimately persevered through lives of difficult labor, subtly asserting their interests over time, the Hyksos were losing touch with the conditions that had allowed for their new comfortable station in the hierarchy. Throughout history, the generation of peace that follows the ultimate victory over the ancestral enemy, along with the boons of regional supremacy, bring with it a self-destructive introspection. Hegemony breeds hubris where efficiency, frugality, and creativity (important traits that allowed the structure to out-compete others) decline in importance.
In some cases, with an increase in comfort, there comes a decline in one of the primary justifications for personal acceptance of spiritual beliefs; that my material suffering must be given a sense of transcendent purpose and significance. This leads to an active interrogation of the utility of the traditional structures that allowed for victory. From these inward views, differing perspectives on the collective emerge and people begin to see one another as enemies. If not properly mitigated by the discovery of a new enemy or new lands, this success can actually cause a defeat of cohesion and fracture the collective.
VII - Reactions and In-Fighting
A generation into Apophis' reign, after his predecessor, Khayan, had conquered the entire Nile, a new dynastic entity emerged in Thebes under the shadow of Hyksos rule. The 17th Dynasty was an invigorated effort at autonomy which sprung from the vision of the Antef family, an elite Theban faction of clannish relations. Though they were still beholden to Hyksos demands, they nevertheless prompted considerations of serious resistance. The city's relatively removed proximity from the northern hubs of politics and economics allowed it to be less reliant on a centralized system, which had allowed Thebes to establish a semi-autonomous hierarchy. A dozen years after the emergence of the 17th Dynasty, the Antef family succumbed to a new family conglomerate which seized Thebes. There was no way to determine who would lead the city except through explicitly self-issued authority.
Senior Queen Teti-the-younger and her husband, King Senakhtenre Ahmose beget Seqenere Tao and Queen Ahhotep I along with Wadjkheperre Kamose and Ahhotep II, all four were siblings. The former two would be consorts, as would the latter two. Seqenere Tao further beget a numerous number of children named Ahmose, male and female, but of upmost concern is Ahmose I and his sister-queen Nefertari. This would make Senakhtenre the father of Seqenere and Kamose and it would make Ahmose I Seqenerne's son and Kamose's nephew.39 This family no longer wanted away from Hyksos authority. They wanted an end to it.
The progenitor of the family, Senakhtenre Ahmose, began skirmishes against outposts north of Thebes. In one of these battles, he would die, setting a tenuous tone for the future. But Seqenenre Tao would continue the fight by uniting nearby city-states like Edfu to their vision, and exerting control over cities as far north as Cusae, even if by the sword.40 But he too would fall during these efforts, failing to finish the fight. His brother, Wadjkheperre Kamose, (whose name means: the one who flourishes in the manifestation of Re') expanded the battle to capture the vision his forebear had left incomplete.
Kamose is recorded in the Carnarvon Tablet justifying the increase in hostilities toward the Hyksos:
"One chief is in Avaris, another in Kush, and I sit (here) associated with an Asiatic and a Nubian! Each man has his slice in this Egypt and so the land is partitioned with me! [. . .] No one can be at ease when they are milked by the taxes of the Asiatics [. . .] I shall grapple with him that I might crush his belly, (for) my desire is to rescue Egypt which the Asiatics have destroyed."41
Hyksos behavior was abhorrent to most Egyptians, but especially for the 17th Dynasty, who had to rely on them and the Nubians for any external interactions. Furthermore, Hyksos taxes were likely especially heavy on Thebes since it resisted the conquests of Khayan for the longest.
Still, other court officials and wealthy Thebans dissented on why an attack would be imprudent:
"We are doing alright with our (part of) Egypt [. . .] Our cattle have not been seized [. . .] He has the land of the Asiatics, we have Egypt."
Put simply: 'the material benefits of maintaining the status-quo should persuade even the most zealous that resistance, let alone open war, is counter-productive to their interests'. Many of the elite class would have been unperturbed by any impositions on them as long as they retained their position and local influence. Yes, the illegitimacy of the Hyksos was apparent, but they had a reservoir of manpower in their allied cousins in the Levant along with power to cut off their rival from the north and south. This situation must have been incredibly delicate to navigate for the family of Kamose, as their control over the Theban confederation was as tentative as the Antef family's had been over Thebes before Senakhtenre asserted himself. But to Kamose, who viewed Apophis as a "chieftain of Retjenu",42 any impositions by the Hyksos were illegitimate. He would be able to consolidate this sentiment and there would be war c. 1550 BC.
VIII - The Crusade
While gathering strength, Thebes fortuitously intercepted a messenger from Avaris on route to Kush. Kamose seized their correspondences and learned that the Hyksos were moving a large army through the Bahariya Oasis, far west of the Nile. It was almost 300 miles from Avaris to the oasis, and a similar distance from Thebes if taking a direct route; but it would be almost double that distance if taking a provisionable route with roads. There was little time to plan or prepare if something was to be done with this information. The family deliberated with their confederation, consulted oracles, and spoke with advisors. Then with decisive energy, Thebes mobilized their forces and rushed to the Oasis. This rapid move would have been impossible if not for the way the ancient world revolved around warfare with hierarchies that engendered definite and immediate enforcement of authority.
They arrived at the oasis before the Hyksos and prepared an ambush either beneath the palms and Cretaceous plants of the millennia or among the surrounding Martian rocks poking out from the sand. The Hyksos approached the nebulous green mass hidden in the tan sea. Theban commanders, hiding with their men, issued expectations and encouragement about righteously laying waste to their nemesis. They had not founded the cities they resided in. Their priests were only imitators, shaman in robes. Their rulers were thieves. And as the soldiers watched the glistening silhouettes emerge from the horizon, where the pale sky met dry sand, their commanders reassured them that all that would end now.
The Hyksos suffered a crushing defeat at the Bahariya Oasis. The army they had sent was vanquished, its goods pillaged. A thin trail of smoke rose from the desert, too distant to be seen in Avaris, but present and palpable in the royal palace there all the same. With momentum in his favor, Kamose returned to the Nile, using it to amphibiously raid towns as they went north, down river:
"[. . .] the army provisioned itself everywhere [. . .] My army acted like lions with their spoils – chattels, cattle, fat, honey – dividing their things, their hearts joyful."
These raids were incredibly successful and forced the Hyksos to call upon their ancestral allies: mercenary Canaanite tribes from Palestine. But Kamose kept pushing north, past the Great Canal, victory after victory, until there were fires along the shore of the Nile at Memphis and beyond, where Avaris lay within sight.
Kamose leaves nothing to the imagination regarding the awe and potency of his advance when he states:
"The mistresses of Avaris shall not conceive, their hearts shall not budge in the midst of their bodies, when the war-whoop of my troops is heard! Does your heart fail, O you vile Asiatic? Look! I drink of the wine of your vineyards, which the Asiatics whom I captured pressed out for me."
From Avaris, Apophis wrote desperately to his ally in Kush:
"Do you see what Egypt has done to me? [Kamose] is pushing me off my (own) land! I have not attacked him in any way comparable to all that he has done to you; he has hopped up the Two Lands in their grief, my land and yours, and he has hacked them up. Come north! Do not hold back! See, he is here with me: There is none who will stand up to you in Egypt [. . .] Then we will divide the towns of Egypt, and [Kush] shall be in joy."43
The plea for Nubia to invade north and attack Thebes while its army was away would not go heeded. Though diplomatic allies in trade, Kush saw no reason to be involved in Egyptian wars. And so all aid was cut off from Avaris, preventing any distraction.44 Apophis and Kamose, the Hyksos and the Thebian Egyptians, prepared for the siege of Avaris and the inevitable battle in its streets.
However during this final stage of the war, both leaders would die, leaving successors to carry out the conclusion. For the 15th Dynasty, the figurehead Khamudi was either forced to take the role or forcefully took it in a last-minute power-grab. For the 17th Dynasty, Kamose's nephew, Ahmose I, would rise to the occasion, likely having been hoping for this moment his entire life. He brought his family's army within Avaris itself. They gazed upon the captured monuments and stared at the faces of pharaohs who could never have imagined the tumultuous events which would have precipitated their statues arriving there.
Kamudi and many Hyksos elites were nowhere to be found though. They had fled east to their ancestral homeland, congregating at Sharuhen, (south-east of present-day Gaza) a city which had maintained close relations with Avaris since the 14th Dynasty. Ahmose I followed and besieged the city for three years before finally conquering it. A firm end was set to the Hyksos 15th Dynasty and a close to the Second Intermediate Period.
From the beginning of Senakhtenre Ahmose's rule to the end of Kamose's was around a decade. Yet in that time, those who had aligned themselves with the family, especially with Kamose, treated it as the proudest moment of their lives. They had come to believe in the vision of an Egyptian Egypt and had helped to bring it about. We have personal accounts from some of these people, giving unprecedentedly clear insight into their thoughts. A leader from Edfu, a drummer named Emheb,45 states:
"I was one who followed his lord in his footsteps, and did not cringe at any statement he made. Thereupon I brought about the overpowering of the master of craftiness through my agency [. . .] [Kamose] is a god while I am a ruler; his job is to slay, while I keep alive"46
Another, a fighting man named Amose, recorded this statement:
"I was a brave fighter of the mighty ruler [Ka]mose living forever. I acquired 46 people while following the ruler [. . .] I protected my (fellow) townsfolk, and I did not have anyone else sent".47
It was a completed duty and fulfillment of purpose, a victorious crusade.
IX - Epilogue
For 125 years the 14th Dynasty had ruled, and the 15th had ruled for 109 years after that. For approximately 250 years then, the Second Intermediate Period had endured;48 longer than the United States has been a nation. Egypt was reunited c. 1540 BC. To express this reconquest, the Thebans fused their local Sun god, Amun, to the more archaic solar deity, Re, to create the new god of the New Kingdom; Amun-Re.49 The Sun that rose over Thebes now rose over all Egypt. For nearly 250 years after as it hung its blessings over the 18th Dynasty, that Sun did not set. The 18th Dynasty would produce such rulers as: Hatshepsut, Thutmose III, Akhenaton,50 Nefertiti, and Tutankhamun. All borne from the same lineage and family tree, whose roots were laid by Senakhtenre Ahmose and his vision.
We can almost hear the 18th Dynasty swearing to themselves that no foreign kings would ever rule a divided Egypt again. Sometime around 50 years after the Hyksos expulsion, in a list of temple reconstruction projects, the pharaoh Hatchepsut states that:
"I have restored what was destroyed, I raised up what had formerly been shattered, since Asiatics were in the midst of the Delta (at) Avaris, when the nomads in their midst were destroying what had been made [. . .] I have driven off the abomination of the great god, and the earth has removed their footprints"51
But there were some Hyksos stragglers who had escaped. In their flight, they took the knowledge and experience they had gathered from a life in Egypt back to their ancestral homeland in Palestine, altering the region forever.
There are stories that have been passed down, recounting how a man named Joseph (great-grandson of a nomadic shepherd named Abraham) was sold into bondage and arrived in Egypt, in a region of the Nile Delta called Goshen. There are stories of how he rose to the role of vizier to the pharaoh and invited his family to live with him in the new land. Generations later, one of their descendants, named Moses, rediscovered his ancestor's deity after being raised as an Egyptian. Helping the rest of his people out of bondage, they flee to the Red Sea. After crossing they wander toward their ancestral homeland as strangers, constantly reliant on distant, almost inaccessible concepts of purpose and identity. After establishing a hierarchy once their identity was rediscovered in the wilderness, they emerge into Canaan and conquer the land one tribe at a time. Dividing the land among the victorious clans, Judges emerged who unified the tribes and led the people toward their vision of a new kingdom called Israel.
X - Conclusions
What can we distill from this historical study? Firstly, we can observe that the establishment of a social hierarchy was necessary to maintain stability on both the local and central levels, the rulers of this hierarchy being the most vital component. This is demonstrated by periods of instability when the rulers faced some issue; famines due to inability to plan or prepare, times of lustration, conquest, dynastic issues and struggles of succession creating opportunities for usurpers, or the inablity to assert themselves. In the hierarchy, like in a body, there are hands, muscles, a heart, and sensory organs. In the metaphysical body of the collective, the rulers are the brain. Therefore, the more intelligent and strong willed the rulers, the more adept the collective will be.
We also observe the phenomenon of this ruling class being conquerors or usurpers and therefore excellent competitors. The familial system formed a network of 'genetic trust' that did not necessarily have to be initially earned or maintained. As pack-predators too, ensuring the promulgation of your own lineage has evolutionary advantages. This is also why there were so many inter-familial marriages, such as with Mentuhotep II, Seqenere Tao, and Kamose all having sister-consorts. These were formalized and justified as keeping 'divine blood' from being affected by admixture. But what greater demonstration of one's connection to divinity was there than victory at the highest competition: war?
The 'transfer of power' followed from one generation of the family to another. Not only did this keep power within the family but it allowed for rulers to be educated and familiarized with responsibilities and necessary knowledge their entire lives. This produced a capability to rule that could extend for decades, like the fifty-year reign of Sewoserenre Khayan. The fact that the Hyksos ascribed by the same system of power transference as the Egyptians also shows how it was universally applicable in its simplicity and utility. The experimentation of 'co-regency' during the 12th Dynasty also shows how to mitigate the problem of the ruler failing to leave a designated heir or prepare their designated successor well enough.
The possibility of usurpation is a threat to any system, but it is especially clear and present when power is concentrated into one person, one family, and one exclusive class. For rivals to emerge successful over the current rulers, they have to expend a massive amount of energy consolidating their faction and ensuring the current rulers do not have support. This will actually maintain order by 'upgrading' or 'reinstating' loyalty, even though there would be a period of conflict. But the common person had little to fear if this transpired since they were only working for the rulers, not with them. This is why, for ancient rulers, the prerogative of maintaining order could not be met by treating others 'humanely' or respecting 'rights'. This only allowed for others to gain resources that could be used against you. Order could only be achieved maintained through maintaining rigid hierarchy forcefully.
However the ruling class of intelligent and initially energetic rulers can degenerate due to their own victory. As we saw with the Hyksos themselves, their inability to secure strength and will across generations while also disrespecting the people they would have turned into an ethnic underclass, allowed for the more energetic Theban confederation to supplant them. Therefore, to keep the ruling population strong, they either had to regularly wage war to reaffirm their status as successful competitors or they would be replaced by those who were. The established descendants of conquerors had something to lose, whereas their energetic, emergent rivals had something to gain. Again, regardless of gained victory, this system maintained order even if at the cost of a brief unstable period.
What can stop a collective who wants what you own at any cost? Only their death. How can you secure that? By being skilled at war. How can you be skilled at war? Having the resources available to maintain a military class. How do you acquire those resources? By having a class below them to labor for resources. How do you maintain this structure? By justifying the force necessary to defend it through a unified sense of purpose and identity. The principles that rulers ascribed to allowed for the securement of order and stability for civilization. These principles maintain the social hierarchy by exercising power against threats and keeping power within the family while actively taking measures against usurpation (by keeping vassals satisfied) and decadence (by testing and refreshing the ruling family's sense of being conquerors). These principles and concerns are intuitive, not reliant on any carefully laid out or specific protocol. They are consistently beneficial behaviors for the rulers that allow for a baseline of civilized existence and are therefore perpetually propping it up to one degree or another.
In regards to what lessons we might be able to extract for the contemporary situation from this, we can make the observation that the incredibly wasteful and needlessly complex processes of 'deciding' who figureheads will be in democratic forms of political organization do little to establish order compared to the simple, ancient principles that guided the ruling class. Firstly, how can there be any ontological foundation for the collective consciousness if there is no single nexus of authority? It is like an orchestra trying to form a symphony without any sheet music or conductor. The myriad ideological, racial, economic, and religious categorizations will naturally factionalize, but the fissures between them are exacerbated by democracy, which sets each identity against one another politically until there is only cacophony. Secondly, in no way does this mean that a social hierarchy does not exist, but that the rulers must attempt to hide their role as such from the general populace because the foundational, justifying mythology that allows for any semblance of continuity claims to preclude their existence. All civilizations have a ruling class, the brain is necessary for the social body to function.
The cultural divestment of a subjugated people is something which conquerors are obliged to enforce or they risk unnecessarily sustained conflict with a still undispersed collective consciousness. The removal or defacement of monuments, the erosion of religion, and forceful implementation of new monuments and religious rites incline the subjugated population to accept their defeat, as the indicators of their identity have been removed. This principle holds regardless of motive or justification. Therefore in modern times when we see statues toppled, defaced, closed-off, mocked, or legislatively quarantined, we must acknowledge that the status quo has shifted against the native population's interests and they risk total subjugation.
Another point with parallels to modern times regards the phenomenon of immigration and its logical consequences. For the Egyptians, the demography of the Nile Delta effectively determined who ruled it. The only difference between the Hyksos and any other invaders was the timetable in which they arrived. Border regions are especially susceptible to this as there would always be cross-pollination between peoples on either side. But as one crosses more and more into the other, two peoples (especially if they cannot even speak the same language) who exist in the same space will invariably come into conflict eventually. This is especially the case when one of those peoples is an imported underclass of laborers. How this applies contemporaneously is obvious, especially in a democratic system.
Lastly, we must look at the importance of local infrastructure for the ancient Egyptians. One of the more important take-aways regards the observation that collapses can happen frequently and over seemingly minor things (like with what antecedent Sobekneferu's reign). The only way recoveries took place in either Intermediate Period, or even with the Hyksos themselves, was through local clannish factions exerting the influence they had steadily built for decades or even generations before they had the opportunity to be potentialized. The rapid movement of these factions when they sensed an opportunity ensured their fitness in competing to restore stability, guaranteeing them a prominent role in the post-crisis hierarchy and generally affording them a higher degree of survivability. Creating independent high-trust networks separate from the central authority during periods of stability is what provides the means to take advantage of destabilization.
: Foster, John L. Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology. University of Texas Press, 2001, pg 179.
: The quality of the mind being a by-product of the brain's neural synchronization; the quality and will of the collective consciousness being by-product of social synchronization.
: Winlock, H.E. The Rise and Fall of the Middle Kingdom in Thebes. The Macmillan Company, 1947, pg 60-63.
: Arnold, Dieter, and Dorothea Arnold. "A New Start from the South: Thebes During the Eleventh Dynasty". Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom. Edited by Adela Oppenheim, Dorothea Arnold, Dieter Arnold, et. al. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Press, 2015, pg 38 and 43.
: Compare with situation after the fall of Rome and closing-off of Mediterranean trade after c. 700 AD.
: Egyptian '3m -- an ethnic, geographical denotation that the Egyptians used in reference to Canaanites, Amorites, Bedouins, and generally Semitic peoples.
: 'Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology', pg 179.
: Mourad, Anna-Latifa. Rise of the Hyksos: Egypt and the Levant from the Middle Kingdom to the Early Second Intermediate Period. Holywell Press, 2015, pg 117-118.
: We should note, however: "the general prosperity of the period was enjoyed by relatively few". Van-Seters, John. The Hyksos: A New Investigation. Yale University Press, 1967, pg 40.
: Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology, pg 88.
: Which is particularly interesting regarding these comments is the context surrounding them if Amenemhat actually did usurp Mentuhotep IV's throne.
: Arnold, Dieter, and Peter Jánosi. "The Move to the North: Establishing a New Capital". Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom. Edited by Adela Oppenheim, Dorothea Arnold, Dieter Arnold, et. al. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Press, 2015, pg 57.
: Translated by the University of College London, 2000. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/museums-static/digitalegypt/literature/teachinga1sec1.html
: The Rise and Fall of the Middle Kingdom in Thebes, pg 92-93.
: The Hyksos: A New Investigation, pg 90-92.
: Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology, pg 80.
: Ryholt, K.S.B. The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C. Museum Tusculanum Press, University of Copenhagen, 1997, pg 282.
: Ibid, pg 75-78.
: Ibid, pg 99-102.
: Holladay, John S., Jr. "The Eastern Nile Delta During the Hyksos and Pre-Hyksos Periods: Toward a Systemic/Socioeconomic Understanding" The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997, pg 184-186.
: Bietak, Manfred. "The Center of Hyksos Rule: Avaris (Tell el-Dabca)". The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997, pg 97-111.
: Ibid, pg 113.
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 111-115
: The Eastern Nile Delta During the Hyksos and Pre-Hyksos Periods: Toward a Systemic/Socioeconomic Understanding, pg 209.
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C, pg 252-254.
: Ibid, pg 119-123.
: Spengler, Oswald. Man and Technics: A Contribution to a Philosophy of Life. Translated by Francis Atkinson & Michael Putman, Arktos Publishing, 2015.
: Bronze Age Pervert reworking Darwin.
: This is why Gnosticism ultimately fails for predators: all matter / space is already malevolently owned and always will be by the enemy in a spiritual war.
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 189.
: Ibid, pg 120-121.
: The Center of Hyksos Rule: Avaris (Tell el-Dabca), pg 111-114
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 133-136
: Grimal Nicolas. A History of Ancient Egypt. Translated by Ian Shaw, Blackwell Publishing, 1994, pg 193.
: Rise of the Hyksos: Egypt and the Levant from the Middle Kingdom to the Early Second Intermediate Period, pg 176-180.
: The Hyksos: A New Investigation, pg 174-180.
: Redford, Donald B. "Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period". The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997, pg 4-7
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 272-280.
: Ibid, pg 171-172.
: Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period, pg 13-14.
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 131.
: Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period, pg 14.
: Ibid, pg 14-15.
:Baines, John. "The Stela of Emhab: Innovation, Tradition, Hierarchy." "The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, vol. 72, 1986, pg 41-53.
: Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period, pg 12.
: Ibid, pg 12.
: The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C., pg 185.
: Amun-Re and the Theban Triad. University of Memphi. 2019 https://www.memphis.edu/hypostyle/meaning_function/amun-re.php
: A pharaoh who would distill this merging of solar deities into a quasi-monotheistic devotion to the Sun.
: Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period, pg 16-17.
Amun-Re and the Theban Triad. University of Memphi. 2019 https://www.memphis.edu/hypostyle/meaning_function/amun-re.php
Arnold, Dieter, and Dorothea Arnold. "A New Start from the South: Thebes During the Eleventh Dynasty". Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom. Edited by Adela Oppenheim, Dorothea Arnold, Dieter Arnold, et. al. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Press, 2015.
Arnold, Dieter, and Peter Jánosi. "The Move to the North: Establishing a New Capital". Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom. Edited by Adela Oppenheim, Dorothea Arnold, Dieter Arnold, et. al. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Yale University Press, 2015.
Foster, John L. Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology. University of Texas Press, 2001.
Baines, John. "The Stela of Emhab: Innovation, Tradition, Hierarchy." "The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, vol. 72, 1986.
Bietak, Manfred. "The Center of Hyksos Rule: Avaris (Tell el-Dabca)". The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997.
Grimal Nicolas. A History of Ancient Egypt. Translated by Ian Shaw, Blackwell Publishing, 1994.
Holladay, John S., Jr. "The Eastern Nile Delta During the Hyksos and Pre-Hyksos Periods: Toward a Systemic/Socioeconomic Understanding" The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997.
Mourad, Anna-Latifa. Rise of the Hyksos: Egypt and the Levant from the Middle Kingdom to the Early Second Intermediate Period. Holywell Press, 2015.
University of College London, 2000. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/museums-static/digitalegypt/literature/teachinga1sec1.html
Van-Seters, John. The Hyksos: A New Investigation. Yale University Press, 1967.
Winlock, H.E. The Rise and Fall of the Middle Kingdom in Thebes. The Macmillan Company, 1947.
Redford, Donald B. "Textual Sources for the Hyksos Period". The Hyksos: New Historical and Archaeological Perspectives. Edited by Eliezer D. Oren. The University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, 1997.
Ryholt, K.S.B. The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period c. 1800-1550 B.C. Museum Tusculanum Press, University of Copenhagen, 1997.
Spengler, Oswald. Man and Technics: A Contribution to a Philosophy of Life. Translated by Francis Atkinson & Michael Putman, Arktos Publishing, 2015.